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Asking for Feedback When Social Dancing

Here’s another weekly salsa tip and something we experience from time to time as teachers.

Let’s say I’ve just finished dancing with somebody, you say thank you and you’re going to be on your way but then they stop you and ask:

“Any suggestions? Any feedback on my dancing?”  

Should I ask for feedback when social dancing?

Our vote is no.

For me personally I have a harder time handling this situation than my wife Scarlet. She typically responds:

“You know this is social dancing and I don’t really give feedback. If you really want to learn there’s classes and there’s privates. This is not really the environment to do that.”

Me on the other hand I have a harder time doing that and, believe me, most of the time that’s what I want to say, “Hey, it’s not really the appropriate environment for this.”

We’re not the only ones that feel this way either, our peers do too.

On top of that Scarlet and I take classes. We’re also very interested in learning and improving but I’m not about to go and social dance with a variety of people and ask, “How am I doing? What should I do better?” How the heck should they know?

If you really want to learn go to somebody you trust and learn from them. Otherwise your learning is going to be a bunch of tips from a random people and you’re going to hear something different every time.

You want to learn from people you trust AND that know what they’re doing. Set up some lessons with them or go to their group classes.

What I also find is that a lot of people who say they’re very open to feedback reject the feedback you give them. They approach you on the social dance floor, request feedback, you give them a suggestion and then they respond something like, “Wow, I don’t do that. Most of the follows say I’m pretty smooth,” and then they start rejecting your information.

So for me I don’t like having to go through that and then now I’m going to have to explain what I meant and feelings might be hurt. it’s just not the best environment.

It’s not to say you can never do it but use your discretion. I personally don’t do it. Just remember, it’s a social setting, so just dance and don’t be asking for suggestions or tips. We’re all there to have fun and just to enjoy ourselves.

The best place for learning is the studio.